A place to show my love for my granddaughter who lives with Cerebral Palsy and my passion for painting. In an effort of raising awareness for C.P. every painting brush stroke I make on raw canvas is a stroke of love, as I discretely paint a green C.P. awareness ribbon in every piece. Can you find them?
Do you know someone who would like to have a painting done? email www.harrold.janet@gmail.com

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

World Cerebral Palsy Day 2012

Photo credit Natalie Venezia (C) written by Janet Lee Harrold... September 4th, 2012 has been named “World Cerebral Palsy Day” This is the first time ever such a day exists. There has been and still is a Cerebral Palsy Awareness Month but never before has a specific day been named World Cerebral Palsy Day. This day could help to change the lives of people with Cerebral Palsy (C.P). The theme for this unique day is “Change my World in 1 minute”
There is an astounding 17 million people around the world with Cerebral Palsy and those of us who love someone with the non curable disease knows that C.P. does not only affect that person but also affects their family as well, bringing the total to 350 million people who are closely connected to someone with C.P. In addition to celebrating the day, The World Cerebral Palsy Website is giving people with C.P. and their loved ones, the opportunity to express ideas about what they need to make their life more independent or more rewarding. There is no idea that is too small and no idea that is too big. They are also allowing you the chance to make a video explaining your idea. There will be a voting process on the most popular ideas, from that process the best ideas win. In November they become a reality and then by next year on World Cerebral Palsy Day, the winning products will be launched. Can you imagine the feeling if your idea helped to make a significant change in someones life.
Anyone living with Cerebral Palsy knows how even the slightest feat can make a huge difference in the quality of life. So why not voice your opinion? Or have someone else submit an idea for you. You never know if your idea will be chosen and can help change the lives of so many people around the world. Being the grandmother of a beautiful 5 year old girl who lives with C.P. I feel compelled to submit an idea and at least voice my opinion on a few ways that I think that could possibly help her to have a better quality of life. I’m sure that there are so many things that could physically help those with C.P. but since I can’t speak of these first hand. I thought I would leave those requests to the people who are directly affected and living with C.P.
My request would be more of a plea to educate and really drive home the fact that though there are people who have disabilities, these people are people first and they too have feelings and emotions just like you and I. I think that it should be mandatory in schools to inform and educate those who are fortunate enough to be typically developing about why and how people become disabled, and how to speak and act around people who have a disability. If children learn this at a very young age, then I believe they will be more understanding of others and less bullying and teasing will arise. I wish that all schools promoted inclusion and adopted a buddy system that paired children with disabilities with children who are not disabled, giving both children a better understanding of each other making the world a better place to live, while promoting friendship instead of hardship. This is only one small idea, but I believe it could make a huge difference, not only in the lives of those with C.P. but in the lives of everyone. I can’t begin to tell you how much Hailey has taught our family in the past 5 years, because of her our lives have been both transformed and enriched. Our eyes are now wide open. She has taught us the most valuable lessons about what is most important in life. Just by implementing a couple of ideas in the school system can be life changing for so many of our children, how can we ignore the need and the difference we can make?
If you want to make a difference in someone’s life go to World Cerebral Palsy Day and submit your idea. Definition of Cerebral Palsy from the CDC Cerebral palsy (CP) is a group of disorders that affect a person’s ability to move and maintain balance and posture. CP is the most common motor disability in childhood. Cerebral means having to do with the brain.Palsy means weakness or problems with using the muscles. CP is caused by abnormal brain development or damage to the developing brain that affects a person’s ability to control his or her muscles.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

I Have Cerebral Palsy...so what, i'm still awesome!

Meet Jack
This weeks post is an interview with my friend Jack. Jack is 13 years old and lives with Cerebral Palsy. Jack thought he would try his hand at blogging informing others and raising awareness for C.P. I love hearing from others that have C.P. Although each individual who has Cerebral Palsy is different, I learn so much from them and I hope that you do to. But what really caught my attention about Jack was the title of his blog. “I Have Cerebral Palsy...so what I’m still awesome” I loved the positive attitude so much, I just had to contact him! I absolutely love the title of your blog Jack and I totally agree that you are awesome! Can you tell us how you came up with the title? I want my readers to think I have a positive attitude so that title showed that. I want people to know that if you have CP you can still be awesome. I think you are an inspiration not only to people who have disabilities, but in general for having the courage to write about your life with C.P. your ups and downs, your many challenges, as well as your accomplishments as an individual. What do you hope to accomplish as a blogger? As a blogger, I want to help people with CP and also other disabilities to know that they are still regular people. What made you decide to write a blog??? I decided to write a blog because I was wanting to help people. I also thought it would help me feel better. Because blogging is fairly new to you, let’s let our audience get to know you a little better... tell us a little about yourself. I know you like sports, what is the name of your favorite team? Do you like music? What are some of the things that you like to do best? I do like sports I love the Chicago Bulls and am also a Bears, Cubs and Blackhawks fan. I love almost all sports. I do like music, I like hip hop music. My favorite thing to do is play basketball or football with my friends.I also like to play xBox and iPad games. Jack, for the benefit of our readers can you tell me how your C.P. effects your everyday life? C.P. affects my life in a lot of ways. I can't feed myself and it's very hard to do simple things that other people just do easily like getting a drink or putting on my shoes.
I have read that you are able to speak but can be a little difficult to understand, I know that is true for so many people who live with C.P. and communicating can be very frustrating at times. Tell us about your communication device and eye gaze technology. My communication device is the coolest thing. It actually sees my eyes and knows where I am looking. It is also a computer which is cool. Do you communicate solely through that device or do you also use other methods of communicating? I also talk and people who know me well understand me all the time. How old were you when you first got your cool set of wheels (your wheelchair)? My mom says that I was three when I got my first wheelchair. Jack my 5 year old granddaughter is about to get her first wheelchair, Hailey doesn’t speak so it is difficult for me to understand how she feels about this. I wonder if you could be a voice for the younger children who can’t yet express their feelings on this bittersweet experience? I realize that your feelings could differ from theirs, but It would be interesting to hear and understand from your point of view. I always thought my wheelchair was cool. I liked that I had something that other kids didn't have. Now I wish I didn't need one though. I know first hand the importance of being treated like everyone else, tell me why this is so important to you. Being treated like everyone else is important because I feel like I'm a regular kid. I don't like to be babied at all. I also hate to be ignored. I’d like to thank Jack for taking the time to interview with me, and please head over to his blog and tell him that Painting for Hailey sent you and show your support and encouragement to this handsome young guy. If you would like to interview here and share your story with others email me at harrold.janet@gmail.com

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Team Long Brothers "He aint heavy, he's my brother"

Written by: Janet Lee Harrold If you haven't yet seen these boys, then you are missing out on the true meaning of brotherly love. Their story is extremely touching and inspiring! The love they have for each other is obvious and is the driving force that makes them triathletes. Nine year old Conner and his 6 year old brother Cayden work as a team. Cayden is 6 years old and lives with Cerebral Palsy, this may inhibit him from walking and talking, but it doesn't stop him from competing thanks to his brother Cayden who decided to take matters into his own hands so that Cayden could participate in the outdoor activities, instead of watching on the side lines. The strength, courage and determination is amazing to watch as Conner runs, swims and bicycles while pulling and pushing his brother, and the smile on Cayden's face is pure joy! I'm not sure if these young boys know the impact that they are having on others, or if they realize that they are also raising awareness and educating others as they reshape the definition of winning. It doesn't matter to either of them if they win or lose, it matters to them that they cross the finish line together. I may be showing my age when I say I can't help but think their theme song should be the once popular Hollies version of "He Aint Heavy, He's My Brother" See if you agree as you read theses lyrics. Team Long Brothers may not have won the race, but they have definitely won the hearts of so many people across the world. The road is long with many a winding turn that leads us to who knows where who knows when but I'm strong strong enough to carry him he ain't heavy, he's my brother so on we go his welfare is of my concern no burden is he to bare we'll get there for I know he would not encumber me he ain't heavy, he's my brother if I'm laden at all i'm laden with sadness that everyone's heart isn't filled with the gladness f love for one another it's a long, long road from which there is no return while we're on the way to there why not share and the load doesn't weigh me down at all he ain't heavy, he's my brother he's my brother he ain't heavy, he's my brother.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Pairing up quotes with paintings

I am having so much fun pairing up some of the quotes that I have written to the paintings I have created.